DURHAM, N.C. – Behind an array of runs in the late innings of both contests, the Louisville Cardinals (22-8, 2-3 ACC) upended the Duke Blue Devils (16-14, 3-5 ACC) in the series-opening doubleheader Friday at the Duke Softball Stadium.
A three-run fifth in game one and a five-run seventh in the second contest helped push the Cardinals past the Blue Devils. Duke held a 2-0 lead in game one until Louisville began its rally in the third, eventually pulling into the lead and taking game one, 5-3. Game two featured a pitching duel before Louisville broke through with all five runs in the final frame to win 5-0, handing Duke its first shutout loss in program history.
Raine Wilson, Jazmine Moreno and Dominique Salinas led the way for Duke’s offense, with Wilson picking up three hits over the two games while Moreno and Salinas tallied a pair each. Along with Moreno, Haley Wymbs and Hannah Pridemore all drove in one run Friday.
The day’s first game opened with little action until the home half of the second, when Duke plated the first two runs of the day behind RBI singles from Moreno and Wymbs. Amelia Wiercioch opened the frame with a double to right on a 1-1 pitch, while Katherine Huey and Jill Ferraro followed by reaching safely to load the bases with no outs. Moreno would step in and line a single to center and Wymbs would follow with a base hit through the right side to put Duke up 2-0. However, that is all Duke could get out of the frame, as Louisville picked up three-straight outs to escape the jam without any more damage.
Louisville then began chipping away at Duke’s lead, using a sac fly in the third and RBI single in the fourth to tie things up at 2-2. The Cardinals broke things open on the second batter in the fifth with a two-run blast to left to go up 4-2. A single three batters later would drive home the inning’s third run, pushing Louisville’s advantage to 5-2.
Duke attempted to rally in the seventh, with a Wilson single and Rachel Abboud walk to put two on with no outs. A pair of strikeouts put the Blue Devils’ rally in jeopardy before Pridemore singled to center to score Wilson, but a sly out to left closed the book on game one, giving the Cardinals the series-opening win, 5-3.
Game two featured less scoring and more defensive prowess, as both sides were held scoreless until the day’s final frame. The Cardinals were able to put a runner on third in the opening inning before Duke escaped unscathed, while Duke’s first threat came in the fourth as two singles put Wilson 60 feet from pay dirt.
The backbreaker came in the seventh, as Georgia took advantage of several miscues from the Blue Devils to push out in front. UL would load the bases with one away before driving home two on a single up the middle. Duke looked poised to escape the frame without any other harm before Louisville landed a pinch-hit, bases-clearing double to go up 5-0. Duke’s leadoff batter in the home half was able to reach via walk before back-to-back strikeouts and a groundout gave Louisville the series with a 5-0 victory.
Duke used three of its pitchers Friday, with Wiercioch (4-4) drawing the start in game one and Huey (7-5) getting the nod in the latter of the twinbill.
Both sides return Saturday afternoon for the series finale, with first pitch from the Duke Softball Stadium set for noon ET. The contest will be live streamed on ACC Network Extra, which fans can access through WatchESPN.com and the ESPN app.
For more information on Duke softball, follow the Blue Devils on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram by searching for “DukeSoftball”. You can also find all-access coverage of all Duke athletic programs on SnapChat by searching for “dukeathletics”.
Friday, March 23
Louisville def. Duke, 5-3 (Recap, Stats)
Louisville def. Duke, 5-0 (Recap, Stats)
Saturday, March 24
Duke vs. Louisville – 12:00 p.m. ET
ACC Network Extra
Duke Softball Stadium
Saturday’s series finale will be broadcast on ACC Network Extra. Fans can access the broadcasts through WatchESPN.com, the ESPN app or by clicking the links below.
Duke vs. Louisville ACC Network Extra (Saturday, March 24)
Duke will provide live stats for the weekend’s series finale. Fans can access that through www.GoDuke.com/softball or by clicking the link below.
Duke vs. Louisville Live Stats (Saturday, March 24)
Admission for all games this weekend, as well as all season at the Duke Softball Stadium, is free to all fans.
Saturday, March 24 – High 47, Low 33; PM Rain (90%)
2018 Duke Softball Program Firsts...
Game: Feb. 8, 2018 vs. FAU (Game 1)
Win (Team): Feb. 8, 2018 vs. FAU (Game 1), 4-3
Win (Individual): Katherine Huey vs. FAU (Game 1), Feb. 8, 2018
At-Bat: Jameson Kavel vs. FAU (Game 1), Feb. 8, 2018
Pitch: Amelia Wiercioch vs. FAU (Game 1), Feb. 8, 2018
Baserunner: Jameson Kavel (Walked, 1st Inning) vs. FAU (Game 1), Feb. 8, 2018
Hit: Amelia Wiercioch (Double, 1st Inning) vs. FAU (Game 1), Feb. 8, 2018
Single: Rachel Abboud (3rd Inning) vs. FAU (Game 1), Feb. 8, 2018
Double: Amelia Wiercioch (1st Inning) vs. FAU (Game 1), Feb. 8, 2018
Walk: Jameson Kavel (1st Inning) vs. FAU (Game 1), Feb. 8, 2018
Hit By Pitch: Ashleigh Rodriguez (7th Inning) vs. FAU (Game 2), Feb. 8, 2018
Run Batted In: Amelia Wiercioch (1st Inning) vs. FAU (Game 1), Feb. 8, 2018
Sacrifice Hit: Jazmine Moreno (SAC Bunt, 1st Inning) vs. FAU (Game 1), Feb. 8, 2018
Sacrifice Fly: Rachel Abboud (5th Inning) vs. FAU (Game 2), Feb. 8, 2018
Strikeout: Amelia Wiercioch (Strikeout Looking) vs. FAU (Game 1), Feb. 8, 2018
Stolen Base: Dominique Salinas (2nd Inning) vs. FAU (Game 2), Feb. 8, 2018
Complete Game: Katherine Huey vs. Michigan State, Feb. 9, 2018
Shutout: Katherine Huey vs. Michigan State, Feb. 9, 2018
Complete Game Shutout: Katherine Huey vs. Michigan State, Feb. 9, 2018
Extra Innings Game: Feb. 10, 2018 vs. Boston University (L, 7-4 )
Home Run: Katherine Huey (2-Run, 4th Inning) vs. Penn State, Feb. 16, 2018
Save: Amelia Wiercioch vs. Penn State, Feb. 16, 2018
Comeback Win: Feb. 16, 2018 vs. Penn State (Trailed 5-0 in T3, won 7-5)
Triple: Jameson Kavel (6th Inning) vs. Purdue, Feb. 16, 2018
One-Hitter: Amelia Wiercioch vs. Purdue, Feb. 16, 2018
Winning Streak: 5 Games (Feb. 16 vs. Penn State - Feb. 23 vs. Morgan State)
National POTW Honor: Katherine Huey (espnW), Feb. 21, 2018
Extra-Innings Win: March 2, 2018 vs. Yale (W, 4-3 )
Grand Slam: Amelia Wiercioch (4th Inning) vs. Lehigh, March 3, 2018
Run-Rule Victory: March 4, 2018 vs. Kent State (W, 8-0 )
ACC Contest: March 9, 2018 at North Carolina (L, 2-1 )
Multi-Home Run Game: Raine Wilson at North Carolina (Game 1), March 10, 2018
Midweek Contest: March 14, 2018 at Charleston (W, 5-1)
ACC Victory: March 16, 2018 vs. Boston Colllege (W, 4-3)
Four-Hit Performance: Rachel Abboud vs. Boston College, March 17, 2018 (4-for-4)
ACC Series Victory: March 16-18, 2018 vs. Boston College
ACC Series Sweep: March 16-18, 2018 vs. Boston College